Controlled by the Spirit

April 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

“The mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace” (Romans 8:6).  What does it mean to live a spiritual life controlled by the Spirit?  To answer this question from Romans 8:6-11, it is important to see what aspect of the relationship between Christ and Spirit Paul is emphasizing.  First, he says, “if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ” (6:9).  And then, he continues, “if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through the Spirit, who lives in you” (8:11).  Therefore, the Spirit that lives in us and control our lives is the same Spirit of Christ that raised Christ from the dead.  And the control this Spirit exercises in our lives is to do to our mortal bodies what He did to the dead body of Christ.  There is only death if the Spirit does not bring life, and where the Spirit is, there is life and peace.  Everything natural carries within itself the seed of death and is irredeemable in its own powers.  Its continuous life is wholly dependent on the Spirit to bring life in the midst of its natural tendency toward death.  The good news is that the Spirit is always in control and at work in our midst, and that, therefore, we can expect the Spirit to show up with the gift of new life in the midst of our everyday lives.  You and I can either miss the signs of spiritual life in our day today, or we can anticipate and embrace the promise of new life (especially where we least expect it among the natural signs of death).

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